Year 5 of the Brian Waterbury Memorial Run is here! This year I’m finally doing the half marathon again. So far in training I’ve built up to an 11 mile training run but I’ve been splitting up my long runs into morning/evening because of the heat. I’m not sure if this is the best strategy for me because I never felt like I did a “long run” in training.

Race Day

The morning went pretty smooth like any other race. I got dressed and eat some oatmeal before waiting for my ride to get ready. We got to the race venue by 6:30 for a 7:15 race start. We had just enough time to mill about to find friends and take pictures before getting into start corals.

The morning was overcast with a marine layer but not as bad as last year. This race starts the 1/2 marathon and 6 mile races and the same time seeded by run pace.

Some of the aid stations are 2.5 miles apart so I bring my own water bottle that I can fill at aid stations. On the way out to the pier I had a goal of 1:20 to the turn around. I easily made it with my 1 mile intervals and felt pretty good at mile 5. I started thinking maybe I could negative split and have a strong run. But regardless I just wanted to get back and have fun.

I rounded the pier turn around and a few yards later everything seized up, especially my hip flexors. I don’t think my hip flexors have ever been this tight in my life. It was all I could do to just keep trotting along. Since a majority of the runners do the 6 mile race the crowd really thins out as soon as we hit the pier. I ended up dropping my intervals down to 1/2 mile but also reduced my run intervals. I just told myself to keep going, going, going.

I got a ton of compliments and smiles about my outfit which was a welcome distraction. I kept doing race math in my head to make sure I would make the 3 hour cut off. I was doing pretty good until we hit the soft sand at mile ten and a half. It just zaps the life out of you. I just walked all of the soft sand, which is a lot. I had big plans of making up time on the asphalt loop…nope. I was just burnt out. I did what I could and just trudged on. And then back to the sand! I checked my time after getting back to the soft sand and I would really have to hustle to finish 13.1 miles in 3 hours.

I hustled but when I got to 13 miles I could tell there was more than 1/10 of a mile to go. I finished 13.1 in 3 hours but went a little over for the 13.25 course. I knew the course cut off was a loose cut off and the intention was to make sure runners got through the rocks before the tide comes in.

I’m pretty sure this was one of the toughest half marathons I’ve done to date but nothing a night of s’mores and friends cant cure.

We hit the beach to go paddle boarding and boogie board the next day and did an easy recovery spin. Even though this was a rough race I’ll be back for more next year! See you soon Cayucos.

Special thanks to my bike sponsors Betty Designs for decking me out in the best apparel,  Boco gear for the best hats and visors, Coola for keeping my skin protected with top quality sunscreen, and my other sponsors SBR sports, and Momentum Jewelery.